by J.P. Devetori
Tonight, Universitario has a great opportunity to go higher in the Clausura table with 4 matches to go. Not only this is a must win match to help the “U”‘s Clausura chances, but this is also a revenge match vs Manucci. The Apertura match vs Manucci in Trujillo ended in a draw but it was a painful result because it ended the “U”s Apertura chances. With last match ended in a 2-2 draw, the “U” are seeking a new winning streak and remain on the race for the Clausura title in front of over 30,000 hinchas cremas at the Estadio Monumental.
After a comeback draw last match that almost became a victory, the need for Universitario’s key players is important. But heading into today’s match includes 2 key absences: Nelinho Quina (yellow card accumlacion) and Jordan Guivin (red card suspension). A possible replacement for Quina at centre-back is Leonardo Rugel. In Guivin’s case, the possible candidates would be Rodrigo Vilca since Luis Urruti is a winger and Hernan Novick is always utilized as an attacking mid instead of a centre-mid. A likely starting XI from Carlos Compagnucci today would be: Carvallo; Cabanillas, Rugel, Guzman, Corzo; Murrugarra, Vilca; Polo, Quispe, Quintero; Succar.
With this lineup, the “U” are destined to score and if they score first, they will control the game as we’ve seen from the past matches. As long as they stay focused whether ahead or behind, a positive result will occur especially against a struggling Manucci squad. Manucci recently lost at their home stadium in Trujillo against Ayacucho.
A win puts Universitario just 1 point behind top 2 clubs Sporting Cristal and Atletico Grau. Cristal hasn’t played yet (this afternoon) and a loss or a draw keeps the “U” just 1-2 (1 win) behind 1st place and alive in the Clausura chase.
Kickoff will be at 8pm Peru time (9pm ET, 6pm PT) at the Estadio Monumental. Y dale U!